February 28, 2011

The Truth about Greek Rating Websites

Whether you’re a Greek member or not, chances are you’ve heard about the sorority and fraternity rating websites. You know what they’re about. You know that Greek—and non-Greek—members visit them. You may have visited the sites yourself. You may have made an "anonymous" post or two.

Members seem to use Greek rating sites for several reasons: to boost their reputation on campus by putting down others, to defend their chapter against rumors and stereotypes, and to get the “message” out to Potential New Members about what the “best” and “worst” chapters on campus are, especially before recruitment.

What members don’t consider is that every sentence, post and rating on that site, whether malicious or benign, is self-destructive for the Greek Community. Yes, in some terms the posting is anonymous—but it’s also not. To a non-member, it doesn’t matter if you are an Alpha Phi, a Kappa Alpha Theta, or a Beta Theta Pi. To a non-member, you are simply this: “Greek.”

At the end of the day, a lot of our organizations have similar goals: to encourage scholarship and service, to live by our values, and to promote the bond of sisterhood and brotherhood between our members. As leaders in the Greek community, we should be finding ways to come together in order to make a difference. Instead, we waste our time and energy on websites driven by the exact opposite principles of those that our Founders initially established for our organizations.

Before you click “submit,” think about the impact of your words and what they’re worth. In the grand scheme of things, they will only break the promises we make to our organizations, and break the promises we make to one another as Greek members.

Let’s make a pact to change our chapters positively from the inside out. As Alpha Phis, let’s set an example of free, open and respectful dialogue and show others how to conduct themselves when confronted with anonymous comments on sites like these. We can change this trend together, and ensure that the future of our Greek Community is one that fosters healthy, positive and constructive relationships among its members.

“We, as Fraternity women, stand for service through the development of character inspired by the close contact and deep friendship of individual fraternity and Panhellenic life. The opportunity for wide and wise human service, through mutual respect and helpfulness, is the tenet by which we strive to live.”
- The NPC Creed

Kristen Mitchell is the Program Manager of Marketing and Communications at the Alpha Phi Executive Office. She can be reached at kmitchell@alphaphi.org.

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